Resistance is futile, librevenge has arrived
Document Liberation released the first public version of librevenge, a new framework used by free tools to open proprietary files from MS Visio and Publisher, Corel DRAW, Adobe FreeHand, Apple Keynote etc.
The word “revenge” in the name of the framework does look like a slight irony aimed at the topic of reclaiming intellectual property saved in proprietary file formats. The framework itself is in the works since last year by a team that formed Document Liberation initiative earlier this year (see this exclusive interview). It effectively removes duplicated code in libraries such as libvisio (MS Visio importing), libcdr (Corel DRAW importing) and others, while simplifying the creation of new similar libraries.
The release immediately affects LibreOffice, Inkscape, Scribus, Abiword, and Calligra Suite: these projects were first to adopt all the new importers, and LibreOffice is where the majority of code contributions comes from.
David Tardon recently started documenting the API for newly arrived developers who’d like to use librevenge to create their own importers. Everyone is welcome to join the fun and start doing their bit of rebalancing the forces of libre/proprietary.
Developers will find tarballs of librevenge at SourceForge. The public API is now stable for the 0.0.x series of releases,so you don’t need to rely on the Git repository to stay on top of the avalanche of changes.
Meanwhile Anurag Kanungo, one of LibreOffice’s GSoC students, has been actively hacking on libpagemaker for the past 2 weeks so that apps like Scribus could open old Adobe PageMaker files. It’s probably too early to post screenshots at this time, but the developer appears to be making steady progress.